In order to keep up in this ever changing society we find our selves constantly adjusting the ways in which we carry out things such as how we process information that’s presented to us. The learning process and environment for children has changed also, gone are the days of students sitting straight and stiff at their desks arranged in neat rows, here to stay are desks that you can adjust to sit, stand or rest your feet on a footrest.
These desks are popular in the workplace and in now in education from Elementary to High School. It seems that children can’t seem to sit still and focus for periods of time. I have found this to be the truth, so many times I have visited my colleagues classrooms and the students would be working diligently, but the first thing I would notice is how they were sitting, slumped in their chair, sitting on their hind legs, or sitting on one leg and swinging the other.
To me it looked uncomfortable, but the students seemed to focus, where in another class I visited, the teacher ask the student to sit properly, the student complied, but I noticed the concentration wasn’t as good as it was before. They just might be on to something with these adjustable height desks because I can’t help thinking how useful it would be for the students.
What are adjustable height desks?
These desks also known as stand-baised desks are ergonomically designed and have found to have a positive impact on helping children learn. Sitting for long periods of time can prove to be hazardous to your health causing problems such as low back pain and poor circulation. It seems that with these height adjustable tables, by allowing children to stand as they work it helps to burn calories. Improving attention span of children has been linked to these tables in that children seem more alert in class and more productive because they have the opportunity to alternate between sitting and standing, eliminating the need to fidget. There is a foot rest to rest your feet on as well as a stool for when you decide to sit down.
Schools across the country are slowly grasping the concept of being “ergonomically correct” so to speak. According to CNN a middle school in Alexandria Virginia is said to be one of the first in the nation to provide adjustable height desks in the classroom. I say slow because the desks can be costly ranging from $260 -$550 each and with schools facing budget cuts, grants and donations seem to be the only option for now.
There was a study conducted by Benden at Texas AM & N Environmental and Occupational Health Center where it compared the classrooms with the stand-sit desks to the classrooms with the traditional desks for grades 2, 3 and 4 and found that the stand based desks can be useful in promoting physical activity because using them burn 15 – 25 percent more calories than those who use the regular desks.
This is an excellent way to channel some of that restless energy and encourage movement all the while enhancing learning. It’s as if you are addressing two problems at the same time, my what will they think of next?